Tips for Running the Wine and Dine Half Marathon

The runDisney Wine and Dine half marathon is in four days!

wine and dine

This will be my third time running this race, and my fourth night race total (I ran the Tower of Terror Ten Miler last month which is also at night).

Not going to lie, I don’t enjoy running at night. I am more of a “wake up and get your run over with” kind of person, and I also don’t like to stay up late, so without proper preparation this could be a recipe for disaster. Luckily, after running several night races I think I have learned enough to be successful! Here are my best tips for running the Wine and Dine half marathon.

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1.) Relax! Sleep in on Saturday, and relax at your resort. Read a book in your room, go to the pool (but not in the sun!) or something else that doesn’t involve tons of walking. Try not to run around the parks all day! Your legs will thank you later. Also, I will try to make myself stay up late Thursday and Friday if possible to help prepare me for Saturday. I will also most likely take a nap Saturday afternoon.

2.) Prepare for before and after the race: If you plan to stay at the after party (which I recommend!) You will want to check a bag. It is usually chilly after the race, especially after being sweaty, so a change of clothes and sweatshirt are always in my checked bag. Also don’t forget your room key and some extra money to purchase food at the Food and Wine booths! There will be changing tents at the finish line for your convenience. Also, there is a good amount of time between when the busses bring you to the start to when you will actually get into your corral, so you may want to bring a garbage bag to sit on in the grass while you wait.


3.) Watch your footing: runDisney does a great job of lighting up the roads, but there is at least one bump you will go over and need to be mindful of. Also, running through Animal Kingdom will be tight, and has some uneven pavement so pay extra attention running through that park.

4.) Watch your food intake: Do not eat any news foods the day of the race. I know the unique foods at the Food and Wine festival are tempting, but save it for after the race! I usually get up late and eat a big breakfast/lunch then small snack type meals as needed (like a clif bar and banana) until about 6:30 or so. If it will be warm and humid, I will start sipping on Gatorade after lunch until I get on the bus.


5.) Read the official race program: Be sure you know the course, where the aid stations are, and what time to get on a bus. Be sure you get to the race in enough time to go to the bathroom and check your bag (there will be a time cut off for checking bags). A good reason to know the course: real bathrooms! You will be running through the parks, so I always try to take a bathroom break if needed in a “real” bathroom. There is also a map showing you the set up of the pre race area and where to go to get in your corral.

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To get excited about the race, be sure to check out my past two Wine and Dine race recaps from 2011 and 2012! Hope to see you there. Be sure to follow me on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter and maybe we will run into each other this weekend!

QOTD: Will you be running this weekend? Do you have any tips to add?

Looking for more info on runDisney races? be sure to check out their website for more information!

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  1. Awesome! This was very helpful. This will be my first Wine and Dine half and my first time running a race at night! The change of clothes and checked bag are a great idea…thanks!! 🙂

    Karen @karenlovestorun

  2. Great tips Heather. We signed up for the Jingle Jungle 5k too and now I am not so sure that was such a great idea! We do have fun costumes for that race though!

  3. Great post! I’m so excited to be running my first Wine and Dine this Sat and these tips def help!

  4. This is my 3rd year running it, and I think out of ALL of the rD races, this is my favorite (and my 1st race ever was this one, so it’s also near and dear to my heart).

    Great tips! I’ve never been able to rest too much the morning before a night race, but for Tower of Terror I made myself take a nap – made a world of difference!

  5. Great tips! This is my first runDisney event and I can’t wait. Your blog has been so helpful to me in my running journey, so thank you!

  6. I’ve never run this one either. I’m not sure how my body would do with running that late! But I’d be willing to try it! 😉 Have fun!

  7. YAYYY! I’ll be at this race, too, but I’m doing the 5K in the morning. I’ll look for you! I’d love to see you again!!! Good luck to you!

  8. I’m so, so excited for the race! Great tips — except for number 1! Maybe it wasn’t the wisest move to bring my toddler but I know we’ll have fun regardless haha.

  9. Great advice! I can NOT wait to run this race in the future!!

  10. This is great. It’s my first half and my first night run. I’m expecting it to be wonderful!!!

  11. I can not wait to do this race next year! Have fun! I will be there Sunday and Monday. 🙂

  12. I think I may take this weekend off… but that means I’ll have to log my miles on Thursday and Friday.

    I have a night race coming up… you know what? I don’t think I’ve ever run longer than 13 miles at night… i might have to start thinking about this. LOL.

  13. I will be there with you. My first half. I have had a set back this week with a bad chest cold so wish me luck! I had to skip my 10 miler. Fingers crossed. I am truly looking forward to all of it. Thanks for the great tips.

  14. Well..!! agree with your observation and it is really helpful for runners who getting participate in half marathon race. We usually warm up our body before running. Jumping is best example of warm up.

Mentioned elsewhere:

  1. Tips for Running the Wine and Dine Half Marathon

    The runDisney Wine and Dine half marathon is in four days! This will be my third time running this race

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